Welcome to the forum, Nice score on the K7 - it looks to be in great shape for its age. Check out the
"Other Kamados" sub forum on this site since there are threads on restoring this brand of Kamado.
I own three of these Kamado's, all purchased in 2003, still use them regularly and the only time they
were covered was when we had the house painted. Other than that, they are uncovered year round here
in Phoenix, AZ. The black lid handle could be replaced with a drilled wood dowel or if you have access
to a wood lathe, you could craft a new one. Info from a 2013 RJ News Letter states that the spring length
on a K7 should be 18" when removed from the compression tube. A little lube prevents rust and quiets
squeaks when lifting the lid. If the spring has compressed to where it doesn't give the lift it should,
you can reinstall it with a spacer to make up for the lost length due to age and use.
This outfit below bought out Richard Johnson's business and I have no experience with them but they
may be a resource for parts, tiles, etc.
I would also check out Kick Ash Baskets and use one in your fire bowl. It prevents the charcoal from sitting
directly on the bowl and it makes cleaning the ash out easier. I use the original charcoal baskets I bought
with the units and they work great. I think that they also help to avoid cracking the fire bowl. JMO.
If you set the K7 up on a pedestal for more height, make sure that the base is anchored securely. If not, what may
happen is that when the lid is lifted the unit may have a tendency to tilt backwards. Just something to check.
For the main grate, you might check out what Weber offers as it might fit.
Just some thoughts.